Cedar City • Things finally were back to normal for the Grand County Red Devils.
It proved to be a big difference.
After missing six weeks due to a broken leg, quarterback Jacob Francis returned under center to make his first start in nearly two months. Koi Cook, who held fort at quarterback while Francis healed his broken leg, was back to playing all over the place.
And in facing the No. 1 seed out of the 2A North, the North Summit Braves, the Red Devils made sure their quest for a title kept moving toward Ogden. Grand topped North Summit 34-13 in the first Class 2A semifinal at Southern Utah University on Saturday afternoon.
The Red Devils advanced to the 2A state championship game slated to be played next weekend at Weber State University.
"It's good to have a really good group of seniors lead us here," Grand coach Dennis Wells said. "This is what they've talked about all four years they've been here, to be playing for a state championship."
The return of Francis helped the Red Devils jump out to a sizable first-half lead, taking a 28-7 halftime advantage over the Braves. Cook rushed for three first-half touchdowns, asserting his size and athleticism against North Summit.
"It's nice having two players like that," Wells said. "Koi is a big kid that can go on to the next level if he wants."
Francis added two rushing touchdowns in the win, a week after playing a limited role in Grand's 27-20 quarterfinal win over South Sevier.
"It's like having a coach on the field," Wells said. "He's helped call the plays and he's done what's needed to be done. He executes well and he's ran this offense for four years now."
Grand 34, North Summitt 13
O Jacob Francis makes his first start at quarterback in nearly two months, and Koi Cook rushes for three first-half touchdowns.